Tavares and who else? Top names to watch in free agency

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Larry Lage

The NHL’s best rarely make it to free agency.

John Tavares this year is con­sid­ered a top tar­get, as­sum­ing the Is­landers and their new lead­ers can’t per­suade the 27-year-old cen­ter to stay with the fran­chise that drafted him No. 1 over­all in 2009.

Fly­ers gen­eral man­ager Ron Hex­tall said the Tavares sit­u­a­tion is hold­ing back other free agents, not know­ing how high he will set the bar for salaries, and de­lay­ing trades. “I think it’s hold­ing up the hockey world a cer­tain amount,” Hex­tall said.

Some other names to watch ahead of free agency, which be­gins Sun­day:

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